Ever wish your Android phone had better GPS performance? Today Qualcomm revealed that phones featuring their Snapdragon processor are now capable of accessing two satellite networks. Most Android devices provide access to the Global Positioning System (GPS) which is a network of 27 satellites, but there’s a second network of 24 satellites operated for the Russian government by the Russian Space Forces called the Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS).
Select Snapdragon devices can now access both networks, which Qualcomm’s Rob Chandhok refers to as a “dual-core” location system.
Today Qualcomm announced that any device with a Snapdragon S2 or S3 processor is capable of accessing both satellite networks, but the feature must be enabled by the carrier on each specific device. Qualcomm told us the Samsung Galaxy S II on T-Mobile is one new smartphone to offer this exciting new feature and they will provide a list of other phones in the coming weeks.
Some might find it ironic that the T-Mobile SGS2 is one of the first Android phones to support this feature since GPS was virtually broken for many T-Mobile Samsung Vibrant owners.
Having access to GPS and GLONASS is said to offer increased battery life, better reliability, increased accuracy, and a faster fix on location. Using both networks should really come in handy in dense urban areas, where it can be difficult to get a line of sight signal.
Still confused? Check out Qualcomm’s cool video that explains “dual-core” location for your phone.